Google launched a service that allows publishers to manage paid content and subscriptions. Google One Pass is a “payment system that enables publishers to set the terms for access to their digital content”. Once you pay to access some content, you should be able to read it from a computer, a tablet, a mobile phone, even if you’re using a browser or a different app.
Google One Pass tries to be flexible and easy to be implemented. “Publishers have control over how users can pay to access content and set their own prices. They can sell subscriptions of any length with auto-renewal, day passes (or other durations), individual articles or multiple-issue packages. Google One Pass also enables metered models, where a publisher can provide some content or a certain number of visits for free, but can charge frequent visitors or those interested in premium content based on the business model that the publisher prefers.”
The service uses Google Checkout to handle payments and it’s only available for publishers in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK and US. It’s not clear if Google One Pass will integrate with Android’s in-app payments. At the moment, the transaction fee for in-app purchases is 30%.
Apple has recently announced a subscription service for the App Store that uses the same revenue share from in-app purchases. “All we require is that, if a publisher is making a subscription offer outside of the app, the same (or better) offer be made inside the app, so that customers can easily subscribe with one-click right in the app.” The transaction fee is way too high and hopefully Google won’t make the same mistake.